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  1. vw2002's Avatar
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       #1  
    One of the biggest farces I see going on right now is our health care situation.

    With the cost of insurance premiums rising precipitously every year, due in large part to the egregious levels of unpaid medical bills to illegal immigrants, I have to question how this is going to work. I ask this question particularly since 50% of our population is apparently going to be hispanic.

    Now it would appear the WE are footing those unpaid bills, and no one is stepping up to stop this.

    While addressing the illegal influx is no uncomplicated problem, and will require extreme efforts to control, I wonder if there is a better solution to the current problem of high costs.

    Let's see now - what are corporate ceos making now? around 400 times the average employee's yearly salary?

    you ask where we are going to get the money to fund medicare costs?

    CORPORATE CEOS BONUSES / SALARIES

    Executives receiving bonuses of $53.4 million ON TOP of their already existing 8 figure yearly salaries present to me a very clear answer.

    Bill gates, oprah winfrey, steve jobs, michael dell, etc.

    These people make more money than God Himself would make on planet earth, yet no one realizes that taxing a percentage of these combined incomes would take a GREAT burden off the average worker.

    I'm not saying we tax moderate millionaires, I'm saying we tax the multi-millionaires and billionaires. I really dont think they would miss a percentage of such huge compensations.

    I am not of the persuasion which wants to punish success, but egregious wealth must and should be redistributed into areas of our national problems to help support that climate which gave means for those tycoons to reach such success. I think it is their obligation. Just my opinion.

    This yearly percentage tax on multibillionaires would go into a national health savings account to be drawn upon to assauge the rising costs.
    Last edited by vw2002; 01/24/2007 at 09:05 AM.
    I gotta have more cowbell
  2. vw2002's Avatar
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       #2  
    I think its wonderful that person who has worked hard to achieve sucess may own 1-2 or 3 large houses, two of which may rest on the coast of a carribean island or in west palm beach florida.

    But when a person reaches the level of a donald trump, or the hiltons, I believe they enter a new tax bracket within which includes giving back to the country that brought them such incredible success.

    With great wealth or power comes great responsiblilty. I think multibillionaire wealth in the US is exhibit A.

    the trust funds for their future generations will, I'm quite certain, be completely unharmed.
    I gotta have more cowbell
  3. vw2002's Avatar
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       #3  
    Seriously, are there any opinions on this approach? I see a great wealth reserve and a real potential solution to the problem here. What does everyone else think?
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  4. vw2002's Avatar
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       #4  
    crickets.. hmm...

    I wonder if the reason we don't tax these individuals is that they contribute heavily to campaign funding, and politicians don't want to step on toes.

    Even still, I think this idea should be brought up to our government officials.
    I gotta have more cowbell
  5. #5  
    Who are you and what have you done with vw2002 !?!?!?!
  6. #6  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas View Post
    Who are you and what have you done with vw2002 !?!?!?!
    Kind of what I was thinking.
  7. #7  
    vdub, I'm going to have to disagree with you on this one. The last thing we want to do is force out some of the people who create the most jobs. Then we get none of their tax money. I'm leaning toward your first suggestion. We may not be able to do anything about the 30 million illegals already here but if we actually guard the borders and stop the anchor baby onslaught, in a few decades we might be back on track. Of course that's not the only answer. We need to stop the welfare state (that means personal, corporate and state).
  8. vw2002's Avatar
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       #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by hoovs View Post
    vdub, I'm going to have to disagree with you on this one. The last thing we want to do is force out some of the people who create the most jobs. Then we get none of their tax money. I'm leaning toward your first suggestion. We may not be able to do anything about the 30 million illegals already here but if we actually guard the borders and stop the anchor baby onslaught, in a few decades we might be back on track. Of course that's not the only answer. We need to stop the welfare state (that means personal, corporate and state).
    PLease excuse the long post here, I have strong convictions about this topic....
    I understand that we want to keep those who create jobs here in our country. Its not my intention to set a precedent of punishing success or propogating a welfare state in our country. Its just that many of these ceos are so grossly overcompensated, its mindnumbing. Honestly, bonuses of 400 times the average employee`s salary, on top of their existing 8 figure incomes? this is outrageous.

    Im not talking about taking half, or a third, or a tenth of their yearly incomes. Im talking about maybe 1 - 5% per year. If you take this small percentage of the yearly gross earnings for individuals like Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, the former home depot ceo, and even some highly compensated sports figures and add them together with all others from their tax brackets, you are talking about a substantial amount of money. Now Gates and Buffett already donate generously to charity as it is, which is great. But why not contribute similar figures to OUR healthcare system, here at HOME? Would that not be an equally noble act of charity? It would be heroic as well as patriotic. How is it that these individuals WOULDN`T feel a sense of obligation to give back in some significant way to the country which saw them to such achievement.
    Regarding the illegal immigration, hoovs, Im with you 100%. We must put a stop to this problem before a bad situation turns to chaos. Many of these people come to our country with the attitude that they are entitled to everything and responsible for nothing. I resent that bitterly.
    Gov. Schwarzenegger himself said that one California hospital reported $60 million in unpaid medical bills, much of which consisted of services rendered to illegals. Im almost of the mindset that hospitals should demand proof of legal citizenship before granting access to specialized forms of healthcare which american citizens should be entitled to first and foremost. Just as an example, I would hope Illegals are not being placed on lists as organ donor recipients AHEAD of US citizens who need them just as badly. But in any case, healthcare costs are a problem. Forcing the lower, to middle to upper class american worker to shoulder the burden of these premiums clearly isnt working. The money is going to have to come from somewhere else. Now when you see ceos who own 6 houses, 4 helicopter equipped yachts - two of which they havent spent time in yet, you pretty much have to arrive at the obvious conclusion. When corporate executives achieve billionaire status, they enter into a tax bracket which obligates them to contribute a small percentage of their wealth back into the country that housed their successful business models.
    By no means am I suggesting that most or all of our medical bills paid for in full by the wealthy. I think we should all still continue to pay our own way, but the small percentage contribution from the corporate sector might dramatically help our cost levels as well as those of our seniors regarding monthly drug costs.
    Last edited by vw2002; 01/24/2007 at 11:47 PM.
    I gotta have more cowbell
  9. vw2002's Avatar
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       #9  
    How about this one? Those corporate ceo's who employ illegal immigrants should be required to cover an appreciable portion of their illegal employees' medical costs, as a consequence of hiring someone who lacks legal citizenship - maybe THAT will make businesses less likely to take them on in the first place.

    just an idea.
    I gotta have more cowbell
  10. #10  
    Actually, this post points out EXACTLY where our Country is at this point.

    If the Dems and their Pres candidate do not focus on the current situation of the working/middle-class they will lose.
  11. #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by vw2002 View Post
    One of the biggest farces I see going on right now is our health care situation.

    With the cost of insurance premiums rising precipitously every year, due in large part to the egregious levels of unpaid medical bills to illegal immigrants, I have to question how this is going to work. I ask this question particularly since 50% of our population is apparently going to be hispanic.

    Now it would appear the WE are footing those unpaid bills, and no one is stepping up to stop this.

    While addressing the illegal influx is no uncomplicated problem, and will require extreme efforts to control, I wonder if there is a better solution to the current problem of high costs.

    Let's see now - what are corporate ceos making now? around 400 times the average employee's yearly salary?

    you ask where we are going to get the money to fund medicare costs?

    CORPORATE CEOS BONUSES / SALARIES

    Executives receiving bonuses of $53.4 million ON TOP of their already existing 8 figure yearly salaries present to me a very clear answer.

    Bill gates, oprah winfrey, steve jobs, michael dell, etc.

    These people make more money than God Himself would make on planet earth, yet no one realizes that taxing a percentage of these combined incomes would take a GREAT burden off the average worker.

    I'm not saying we tax moderate millionaires, I'm saying we tax the multi-millionaires and billionaires. I really dont think they would miss a percentage of such huge compensations.

    I am not of the persuasion which wants to punish success, but egregious wealth must and should be redistributed into areas of our national problems to help support that climate which gave means for those tycoons to reach such success. I think it is their obligation. Just my opinion.

    This yearly percentage tax on multibillionaires would go into a national health savings account to be drawn upon to assauge the rising costs.
    I didn't respond initially because I wasn't really sure if you were serious...

    I TiVo'd the State of the Union, but haven't watched it yet, so forgive me if I misunderstand where you're coming from. I have a number of thoughts... I think you're tying a number of issues together that deserve to be treated separately... healthcare, immigration, CEO compensation, redistribution of income.

    1. Lack of healthcare coverage for millions of people in the US is a big problem that needs to be solved quickly. I didn't appreciate it when I worked for a very large corporation, but now I pay for my own insurance, unsubsidized, and I see how expensive it it and I can understand how a lot of people can't afford it. It's a shame that for many people, when they get sick, they can't go to a doctor or buy drugs. From the medical system's perspective, it's inefficient because these people end up using emergency services for free, which is ultimately more expensive.

    2. I think you're incorrectly blaming illegal immigrants for the healthcare costs. (Did Bush connect the two?) I'm no expert on immigration, but I believe that unpaid medical bills comprise around 5% of total medical costs. Even if illegal immigrants made up half of that (which is a stretch), that's pretty insignificant relative to other factors, such as:
    Malpractice lawyers - Litigation increases malpractice insurance costs, which are huge and get passed on to patients. It's no coincidence that the most litigious country in the world also has one of the most expensive healthcare systems.
    Paper records - The cost of processing and storing paperwork is enormous. Other industries save $$$ by going digital. It's taking way too long. Instead of letting market forces slowly find a solution, I think the government needs to mandate standards and deadlines.
    Pharmaceutical marketing - Drug reps bribe doctors to prescribe certain drugs with gifts, dinners, and vacations. This practice is illegal in a lot of industries, but it's permissible for doctors. Those "marketing" costs are a significant component of drug costs. Banning that would reduce the cost of drugs, and reduce the overprescribing of expensive brand-name drugs.

    3. CEO compensation is subject to market forces and is usually, though not always, tied to company performance. (The Home Depot CEO's pay was part of his signing package to compensate him for his stock options that he had left behind at GE. It was NOT a severance package, as was widely reported.) It's irrational to complain about a CEO who gets rich from stock options after he increases the value of his corporation ten-fold, yet ignore the investor who gets rich from similar stock options by just sitting there and enjoying the ride.

    As for Gates, Winfrey, Jobs, and Dell, they all reached their wealth not through salary and bonus, but by building their companies.

    4. Taxing the super-rich sounds attractive, and easy, but it can be counter-productive to an extent. Note that when tax rates were reduced, federal tax revenues went up. What do you think would happen if tax rates were raised?

    The super-rich are different from us in that they can be very flexible in how and when they earn their money. An example most of us would understand is trading stocks. We don't pay taxes on gains until we sell the stock. What if we don't want to pay taxes? We hold onto the stock and watch our net worth increase (hopefully) on a tax deferred basis. The higher the capital gains tax rate, the less likely we are to sell (and pay taxes).




    The healthcare system needs reform, but the solution will come from the healthcare industry, not from tougher immigration enforcement or higher taxes.
  12. vw2002's Avatar
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       #12  
    Good points, samkim. when I have more time ill post a bit later.
    I gotta have more cowbell
  13. #13  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas View Post
    Who are you and what have you done with vw2002 !?!?!?!
    OMG - has he been.... liberalized??
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  14. #14  
    It is so refreshing to see a serious discussion of health care reform in the US.
  15. vw2002's Avatar
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       #15  
    At this point, I would say I'm more of an independent now. I'm not convinced by either party right now, and THE determining factors for me will be a candidate`s stance on illegal immigration, border patrol as well as healthcare reform. (obviously national security and iraq are critical as well) I refuse to vote for any candidate of either party who won't confront these issues with the appropriate conviction, once and for all.
    Last edited by vw2002; 01/26/2007 at 01:29 PM.
    I gotta have more cowbell
  16. #16  
    Here's why the administration doesn't really care about this: Mr. Bush thinks that if you're employed, you get free health insurance coverage:
    Quote Originally Posted by President (Yesterday)
    If you work for a company, you pay — you get your health care free, in essence. It’s part of the benefit package.
    http://news.google.com/news/url?sa=t...RYVnz5KVjSXzTA

    And with the unemployment rate in this country being 4.5% (as of Dec 06), surely this is a non-issue! (fuzzy math logic, of course)
  17. #17  
    A correction in the economics of healthcare is not likely to occur unless the government (and perhaps corporations) gets out of the industry. Wherever there is subsidy, there is articificial inflation.

    This is simple supply and demand stuff. The presence of payment assistance creates higher demand on the part of the consumer. This gives the supplier opportunity to charge more than the consumer can afford.

    Couple that with a desire on the behalf of the surrogate payers for accountability from suppliers, a la malpractice lawsuits, and you now have higher costs for suppliers. Higher costs lead to higher prices. Higher prices leads to need for more payment assistance. The arrival of additional assisantance leads higher demand by the consumer....
  18. #18  
    Honestly, I really don't understand why America is the last industrialized nation on this planet to "get it".
  19. #19  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas View Post
    Honestly, I really don't understand why America is the last industrialized nation on this planet to "get it".
    Very intresting topic.To give you a better understanding of why the USA does not offer free health care.It's called MONEY. With money comes better Hospital facilities , Better trained doctors.
    Thats what many Canadens say and they can be wrong..
    Bottom line: nothing comes for free

    Also adding,
    The reason why Clinton brought free heath care to the table was for
    More of the porn mans vote.Poltics.. the American way.
    Clinton:lets raise your tax and drink your tea
    Last edited by slingbox; 01/26/2007 at 05:27 PM. Reason: Also adding
  20. #20  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas View Post
    Honestly, I really don't understand why America is the last industrialized nation on this planet to "get it".
    To get what, guaranteed access to mediocre healthcare in an increasingly untimely manner?

    Yeah, beats me.

    Being in the "business" myself I see what its like in other countries and I have to say: I don't want to get ill but if I must, I hope it's in America.
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